Has maintaining a blog improved my life? -a question from Reshma
The Word and the World.
When I was growing up, "The Word" meant the Bible (and as I was later to figure out- whatever those who held power over me thought was right.) Sometimes the Word was right for me, sometimes not. Sometimes the Words from other sources were more appropriate for me, at any given time. The "blog thing" has shown me that "The World" is full of "Words", some trivial, some truthful (but never completely "true") some just plain mean. But the difference between these kinds of words and other kinds, such as those in journalism and literature, is the feeling I get that "The World" is really just one mind, a mind that has been fractured and compartmentalized but is now just starting- in really a very small way- to integrate. This will improve everybody's life.
The Space Between Us All.
Why shouldn't the ideas of a college student in Korea, an anorexic school-girl in England, expatriates in a variety of situations, a woman without a man, and yes, a computer-systems expert in India, be given equal consideration, as much consideration as mainstream media is given? These bloggers, and too many others to enumerate, have shrunken the distance I had allowed to grow (through laziness as much as anything) between myself and the five billion other souls out there. Can blogging solve the worlds ills? Of course not. Has this closeness improved my life? Of course.
Male and Female.
The eternal riddle. It is life itself, unless you are some asexual plant or bacterium. The barriers between men and women are not always bad, some things about being human are arguably beyond understanding. But the effort to connect, the dance, so to speak, is a wondrous thing unto itself. To be able to see, if only for a minute- if only just a small part of the whole- those inner lights in the opposite sex, to use those lights to illuminate the darkest corners of your own being; that experience makes my life better. Immeasurably.
Knowledge and Understanding.
Lots of the former, not so much of the latter. Certainly the central problem of my life, if not of many others. Reading other peoples' thoughts on issues, and especially following individual blogs for a period of time, has given me a chance to understand things that are hard to grasp in other ways. Of course, as anyone who has read FITK at all knows, I have an interest in Iceland. I'm developing an interest in India. And the UK has always held a special place in my heart. It is interesting to note that these countries (along with Canada) are the ones (after the USA, of course) that read FITK the most. This two-way activity has been most gratifying- and when I realize that peoples from around world are reading, I feel inspired to write a little better, in the hope that I can give someone else a little better understanding, in the same way that I receive virtually every day. And anything that inspires me to write (and write well!) is a good thing.
All Together Now.
So, we're all in this thing together. The good thing about blogging is that once you start to figure it out, there is always someone else out there, someone who may compliment your outlook on life, help complete it, challenge it, or even change it.
I still get those moments when I'm stunned after reading a particular blog post. I've had many, many great moments reading blogs, and still more experiences of a subtle nature- realizations that come only after having followed a blog for weeks and months. That feeling is probably more akin to friendship, albeit virtual. I really respect anyone that has stuck it out, and kept writing, striving, trying to connect.
Short Answer: Yes!